The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has appointed IFA Educational Foundation’s Research & Strategic Initiatives Coordinator Kevin Blanchard as a member of the Advisory Committee of Veterans Business Affairs (ACVBA). Blanchard’s appointment is effective for a three year term, which began Oct.1.
As a newly appointed member of the committee, Blanchard will be tasked with a variety of duties, including: promoting the collection of business information and survey data as it relates to veterans and small business concerns owned and controlled by veterans; developing initiatives, policies and programs designed to foster small business concerns owned and controlled by veterans. Along with the committee, Blanchard will also review, coordinate and monitor plans and programs developed in the public and private sectors that affect the ability of small business concerns owned and controlled by veterans to obtain capital and credit and to access markets.
The ACVBA serves as an independent source of advice and policy recommendations to the SBA, Congress, the President and other U.S. policymakers on programs affecting small businesses owned and controlled by veterans.Blanchard oversees veteran relations, programming and VetFran at the IFA Educational Foundation. VetFran – an IFA initiative designed to assist veterans in their transition to civilian life – has grown into a large network of over 650 franchise brands that voluntarily offer financial discounts, mentorship and training for aspiring veteran franchisees and veterans seeking employment. Blanchard works to promote and educate veterans on the benefits of becoming a small business owner through the franchise business model. A veteran himself, Blanchard served from 2001-2006 in the Marine Corps and spent six months in Iraq, where he was injured and subsequently medically discharged.